Baybars Orsek, director of International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN), Thursday announced on Twitter that India has the most number of verified signatories to the global network of organisations dedicated in combating fake news than any other country.
Orsek also said that he'll be visiting India in 2019 to meet the verified signatories and to be "better equipped" with the needs and challenges to serve the fact-checkers.
That being said, I'm exploring the days to pay a visit to India in 2019 to come together with verified signatories and be better equipped with the needs and challenges that we have to serve the fact-checkers in world's largest democracy. +
— Baybars Örsek (@baybarsorsek) July 17, 2019
After allegations of violating the nonpartisan policy of IFCN code were made against AltNews, Orsek took to Twitter to clarify that the fact-checking portal in question "is not a registered body or a political organisation linked to a political party in India". Orsek also said that they had asked AltNews a set of questions and after being satisfied with their response, it was concluded that there was "no ground to take any action".
.@AltNews has been able to demonstrate that the organization in question is not a registered body or a political organization linked to a political party in India. https://t.co/OQA4dSSqJT — Baybars Örsek (@baybarsorsek) July 17, 2019
Why this is relevant The "clause" that AltNews had allegedly violated was related to the non-partisanship policy of the IFCN code. On 7 June, a Twitter user brought to the notice of the IFCN that Pratik Sinha, co-founder of AltNews, was flouting the neutrality clause. In his bio on Twitter, Pratik has mentioned that he is a part of Jan Sangharsh Manch, a civil rights organisation founded by Pratik's father Mukul Sinha.
Hello @factchecknet@baybarsorsek@dpfunke, your code of principles says that the members of the applicant org should not be members of any advocacy group. So how did you certify AltNews as compliant when their CEO’s Twitter bio shows that they violate your code? pic.twitter.com/A9UFSWNOjB — Spaminder Bharti (@attomeybharti) June 7, 2019
AltNews is a verified signatory of IFCN. The non partisanship policy of IFCN says that its members should not have direct involvement in any political parties and advocacy organisations. It also says that the organisation must not aide any candidate participating in any election, and it should not advocate or take policy positions on any issues which is strictly not related to fact-checking.
Updated Date: Jul 20, 2019 19:58:01 IST